Tag Archives: Disabled people

Trans-ability and Identity and Political correctness

Man likes to put a label on everything; The last few years they have done very difficult about that. since the 1980ies politicians and several pressure groups have been doing difficult about certain names given. This made that today for mentioning certain groups of affected people we can not even use one singular word any more but have nearly to use a whole phrase to denote about whom we are talking. In many cases the word which were made because one word would have been offensive has now become a not to be used word itself.

Two poor disabled Tanzanians in Dar es Salaam ...

Two poor disabled Tanzanians in Dar es Salaam city on Eid day. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some ideal examples is the word for a brown coloured person, once to be called ‘black’ than “neger” or ‘nigger’ than, ‘negro’, ‘negress‘ or ‘African/American/(European) black person‘, ‘negride’ or ‘negroid’ and when “kleurling” or ‘coloured’ was not any more allowed to be used people had to search for other ways to describe or talk about some one with an other skin colour or with an other tan.

The same for those who are not of the original place, which in the past could be called “non-locals” a “foreigner” or  “allochtoon” (“allochttones”), but that last word has become a jinx not to be used any more. Even “stranger” may not be used and some find “immigrant” also offensive for all those who enter now the country. (Nobody dared to use the old word “alien”, but perhaps it once could return again. – joke)

Today the problem also arises by people who have a certain disorder or a handicap. In English that may be an offensive word for denoting  what until now was called a ‘person with a physical or mental  disability’, but this may not be said either today. We can find already people who shiver  when the word “disabled” is used. As such one could say

 He lost his leg when he was ten, but learnt to overcome his handicap.

It was considered that when something happened to a person which caused to weaken a person or got him so gravely damaged, or had the person diminish, as in quality:

an injury that impaired hearing/seeing/walking

English: Handicap sign , Dryden, Ontario, Canada

Handicap sign , Dryden, Ontario, Canada (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The handicap or impairment, disability, disorder, defect, ailment, afflictioninfirmity, disablement, for many was or is considered so negative that except affliction, they may not be used any more, and handicap may only be used for  the advantage or disadvantage in a sportsgame.

a contest, esp a race, in which competitors are given advantages or disadvantages of weight, distance, time, etc., in an attempt to equalize their chances of winning

or in Golf the number of strokes by which a player’s averaged score exceeds the standard scratch score for the particular course: used as the basis for handicapping in competitive play {The Free dictionary Encyclopedia on ‘handicap’}

Some people are against the words handicap and disabled. Some would take up the larger cause of having become “differently-abled” rather than being disabled. But that “play on words” has not been all welcomed, as some consider it offensive.

The question is for many is a person in the quality or state of being infirm. Infirmity implying that the person would be personal failing:  foible. Many start considering when speaking about a disabled person or some one in infirmity this would or should mean one considers that person like having something negative or bad; a negative or bad affection, ail, ailment, bug, complaint, complication, condition, disorder, distemper, distemperature, fever, ill, illness, disease, malady, sickness, trouble one does not want to be confronted with. and there lies the problem. It is more from the user of the word, the person looking at the person who is not like him, that we can see the issue being in the ego of that person, his selfishness not willing to come to be confronted with something which has a connotation with something negative or bad which also could come over him or her. It is more that when using such word it could become to him or her as well as a contagion, contagious disease; contagium, infection; attack, bout, fit, spell; debility, decrepitude, feebleness, frailness, lameness, sickliness, unhealthiness, unsoundness, unwellness, weakness; malaise, matter, pip; epidemic, pest, pestilence, plague.

We have come to live in a time and society where there is no place at all for feebleness and frailness, or infirmity. Physical weakness or debility, frailty is totally shunned. One does not want to see or to be confronted with people with a quality or state of being infirm; feebleness or weakness.

Those who use the words “differently abled” often see the terms “disabled” or “disability” as potentially hurtful or offensive. Today for many it is a taunting to use “Dis” which means “not,” and includes a negative look at some one or something. So calling someone “dis-abled” must mean that a person is “not-able” or even “unable to do anything,” “incapable of ever doing anything functional or useful or desirable either by others or by themselves,” and therefore, it is wrong to call people disabled. There are people who find we could talk about challenged, differently abled, or exceptional people, but for sure should never speak about impaired or incapacitated people, but they do not like the use of ‘disabled‘ either, though this was just a few years ago the clear preference in contemporary American English for referring to people having either physical or mental impairments, with the impairments themselves preferably termed disabilities.

more recent coinages such as differently abled or handicapable tend to be perceived as condescending euphemisms and have gained little currency. · The often-repeated recommendation to put the person before the disability would favor persons with disabilities over disabled persons and person with paraplegia over paraplegic. Such expressions are said to focus on the individual rather than on the particular functional limitation, and they are therefore considered by many to be more respectful. See Usage Note at handicapped. {The Free dictionary on ‘disabled‘}

De Kreupelen- The Cripples, Pieter Bruegel, 1568

Taking the “negative” term to mean a negativity over the whole line is what brings us in problems. Lots of people can not see the “dis” or “not” does not have to be a “non” over the whole line but can denote part of the matter, partly not able to do certain things, instead of not at all being able to do things. In Bible-translations the words ‘crippled‘ and ‘lame‘ came under discussion and like ‘maimed‘ they are not considered appropriate any more to be used. And many do not want to use the word ‘mutilated‘ either for damaged people. at the moment nobody has yet given objection to the word ‘bedridden‘, but with the amount of elderly bounded to the bed this can perhaps soon change.

All that what we call ‘political correctness’ is going to make life so much difficult. Why not call the things by their name and allow to have many synonyms be used by all people? It are those who see something bad in it who have a negative mind, and not the other way round.

Writer, dreamer, activist/organizer, and speaker/educator Lydia X. Z. Brown writes

Speaking from a purely objective standpoint, we as humans are all differently abled from one another. Some people are better at math than other people. Some people are better at public speaking than other people. Some people are better at cooking or even remembering to cook than other people. Some people walk and some do not, and of those people who do walk, not everyone walks in the same way. {How “Differently Abled” Marginalizes Disabled People}

This is something we do have to accept and have to live with. We as human beings do have to accept that we all may be different, though we are all created in the same image of God. In each of us is something which is a high quality and something of lesser quality. We have all our good and our bad points.

Today with the political correctness we can see that many have become afraid to use a certain word because some may come to implement an other meaning to it than they or some may become offended by the use of such word. By looking for a language that seems intended to give the least amount of offence, especially when describing groups identified by external markers such as race, gender, culture, or sexual orientation. No wonder the concept of political correctness has been discussed, disputed, criticized, and satirized by commentators from across the political spectrum and from the cultural and social field, because such looking for new words and doing away with accustomed words shall make it in the end impossible to just use one word or one term. Altering language usage can change the public’s perceptions and beliefs as well as influence outcomes but also contributes to the idea that one or an other word would be bad to use and has to be considered as offensive, and giving the idea to people that in the past those whoo used such a word had such twisted mind as the people who use that word today in the negative sense.

Those people who press to change the use of certain words are often people who themselves desire to eliminate exclusion of various identity groups based on language usage and or would love to target certain groups to reach their goal to exclude or include certain groups of people. We also may not forget that language also reveals and promotes our biases and that people are eager to make use of it to give their opinion over others.

Many people may forget that their word itself may be not the ideal word and would have a lot to be against it. that is proven by the words ‘neger, ‘niger’ and ‘negro’, when once this was seen as the more polite form to denote a dark skinned person it became a term of abuse and a nickname not to be used.

Today we see also that several people prefer to use the term “differently abled” for some one who does not look to have the same qualities as the mainstream citizen. The term “differently abled” used to refer to an individual disabled person is euphemistic. The intentions of the demander of another word may be polite or genteel. But often they do not manage with their mild, indirect, or vague term for one that is considered harsh, blunt, or offensive to find a resolute solution which can hold for many years. With the new term, proposed today we also find it is borderline cutesy and it diminishes the actual experiences of disabled people.

It suggests that the term disability should be uncomfortable and therefore should be avoided. What this does is further increase stigma against disabled people by discouraging discussion about disability and what it means to be disabled.

rightly writes an autistic and multiply otherwise neurodivergent and disabled, queer, asexual-spectrum, genderqueer/non-binary and sometimes read as feminine, and transracially and transnationally adopted east asian person of color from China (into a white adoptive family) person by the name Lydia X. Z. Brown, who also works to examine and challenge the privilege and power she holds as someone raised with middle and upper-middle class money privilege, a U.S. citizen and native English speaker, fairly light-skinned and mostly able-bodied (as hearing, sighted, and walking), raised in a deeply religious and engaged Christian community, educated in a private college and now in law school. She also has a fellow autistic activist/attorney who blogs at Silence Breaking Sound, and is mostly known in autistic/neurodiversity community for their work at the intersection of youth, disability, and queer/trans rights and justice.

Français : Tournoi Ultimate Fauteuil Handicap ...

Tournoi Ultimate Fauteuil Handicap International Nantes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Wanting to put labels on everybody and on everything is something which has always been. Though in the past is was considered to be labelling people whilst now lots of people say they do not want to label people and therefore want to get rid of all possible connection of labelling.

using the term “differently abled” to refer to disabled people actually reinforces the idea that there is one normal way to be human — that there is one normal way to move, one normal way to communicate, one normal way to sense, one normal way to feel, one normal way to learn, and one normal way to think. It does not perform its intended purpose of suggesting that all people are different and that this is okay.

writes the author of Autistichoya.

R.H. (Rusty) Foerger who was born to immigrant parents in certain countries would be looked at with askance. Only because he was not originally belonging to that place where he lives know he would be looked at with disapproval, suspicion, or distrust. Raised by a widow since he was 15 months old after his father died in a car crash in rural Alberta he once more had a negative point for others when confronted with him. Over 30 years ago he met an East Indian woman with whom he serves as marriage mentors and teachers in their local church, where they have raised their now three adult children.

Having been been a lay pastor, teacher, missionary and mentor for over 30 years he recently retired after 33 years as a senior officer from the fire service, where, for most of his career, Rusty worked with families with children who set fires. (You can follow his writing on his blog called “More Enigma than Dogma” to explore “the enigma of our worth” and a prayer blog he curates titled, “Curriculum of the Spiritual Life.”

In his  previous occupation, on occasion he worked with burn survivors who would tell their story to allow students to emotionally grasp the outcomes of fire and burns gone wrong. He came to the conclusion that

Many burn survivors (survivors are adamant about not being called “victims”- since they continue to survive their burns) endure their burn injuries due to no fault of their own, but nevertheless have something to say about pain, burn prevention, and the permanent change to their lives. {Trans-ability and Identity}

In this day and age where we have so many cars on the roads and so many machinery at workplaces we are able to find lots of people who were confronted by the dangers of traffic and by the danger of those electronic monsters which do not stop when human flesh enters their big mouth.

Fires have always been part of human fears. Always there have been lives lost, but also people who could survive though in terrible conditions.

The person who tried to come to rescue when fires broke out has now entered the third third of life and is becoming aware of the role of elders today

“to enlarge spiritual vision, being devoted to prayer, living in the face of death, as a living curriculum of the Christian life” (Dr. James M. Houston).

He who is a life long and life wide learner who seeks to: *decipher the enigma of our worth *rescue from the agony of prayerlessness *integrate spiritual friendship, found burn survivors massively brave and fortified by surviving the initial burns, and the ongoing tortuous burn treatments – among the most painful a person can tolerate.

Burn survivors are not changed merely in appearance by their full thickness epidermis burns; their lives have changed relationally, and in ability. {Trans-ability and Identity}

He confesses that he too find it difficult to keep up with political correctness and the reasons for changing terms.

On the surface, innocently enough, the idea of promoting “differently-abled” was to focus on abilities that are “there” rather than those that are “not.” Thus organizations like the Excel Society state their vision as “Enriching Lives by Enabling Potential.” The word “able” plays into a lot of the thinking in order to “enrich” peoples’ lives. {Trans-ability and Identity}

He continues

In these days of our massive identity crises, in comes the new phrase and phenomenon of being “transabled.” Sarah Boesveld explains more in her article, Becoming disabled by choice not chance:

‘We define transability as the desire or the need for a person identified as able-bodied by other people to transform his or her body to obtain a physical impairment,’ says Alexandre Baril, an academic who will present on ‘transability’ at the Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities at the University of Ottawa.

It is breathtakingly irrational for “abled-bodied” persons to deliberately “dis-able” themselves under the misbegotten notion that they are “trans-abled.” Surely this stretches the boundaries of identity beyond any sensible limits. And what can be said for doctors’ whose ethic somehow allow them to amputate limbs of able-bodied persons? Did they miss that class on the Hippocratic Oath?

Boesveld reports that “Researchers in Canada are trying to better understand how transabled people think and feel. Clive Baldwin, a Canada Research Chair in Narrative Studies who teaches social work at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, N.B., has interviewed 37 people worldwide who identify as transabled.”

Baldwin insists that ‘We have to move away from pathologyzing people and appreciating the very real distress [transabled people] experience…’

Some of his study participants do draw parallels to the experience many transgender people express of not feeling like they’re in the right body. Baldwin says this disorder is starting to be thought of as a neurological problem with the body’s mapping, rather than a mental illness…

He suggests this is just another form of body diversity — like transgenderism — and amputation may help someone achieve similar goals as someone who, say, undergoes cosmetic surgery to look more like who they believe their ideal selves to be. {Trans-ability and Identity}

When referring to groups of people, there is nothing inaccurate with saying that within the group, each person is differently abled. This is true regardless of how many able or disabled people are in the group. It looks that today many people are afraid to be confronted with the reality of not everybody being the same or coming from the same background.

In 2015 Rachel Dolezal, the now infamous civil rights activist, made headlines in June because she misled people about her race. She identified as black, even though she is not of African-American descent. As a child she was a pale, straight-haired blonde, but then  her hair was dark and tightly woven, and her skin deeply tanned.

Hillary Crosley Coker, who describes herself as a light-skinned black woman, on Jezebel wrote

“You can fudge how people may see you … but you’re still born of your parents’ racial makeup, and Rachel Dolezal’s is Czech, Swedish, and German.”

For in her opinion,

“ethnicity isn’t something one can really move in and out of physically or mentally.”

Margaret Wente of The Globe and Mail wrote

These are funny times. Anyone who substituted “gender” for “race,” and said those things about Caitlyn (née Bruce) Jenner, would have been denounced from the rooftops as a hate-spewing bigot.

Instead, Ms. Jenner was lionized for her bold, courageous embrace of her true identity. No one dared accuse her (in the elite media, at any rate) of masquerading as a woman. Race may not be malleable, but obviously gender is. Enlightened people have decided that if a man feels like a woman, he’s a woman. {Race and gender: I feel therefore I am}

The whole race and gender matter made us in France and Belgium, as teachers, security officers and/or social workers not to call parents by the title ‘father’ or ‘mother’. Somebody in charge of a community  may be accused for being offensive or not willing to accept the liberty of gender when using those old familiar words for those who are at the head of a family … or should we say “where” at the head of a family.

Some may look at the want of being of an other sex to be something wrong or not appropriate, an illness or disfuntion in the brains or consider it as a disability. Others consider suchpeople wanting to change themselves as people who want to take on a disability.

The author of “the best of social justice” (blog), who wants to write about transability and self-identifies as being “disabled in some way,” looks at the

The Tumblr Transabled (who) sit on the internet and moan about how the disabled have things so much easier, and how we’re so lucky to be actually disabled. {Why “transabled” is bull}

notes that

most of the people claiming to be transabled choose deafness, blindness, or paralysis. All of those things can be romanticized, and I suspect that is part of the problem. I have not seen a single person claiming to be transabled in terms of depression, chronic pain, postural orthopedic tachycardia syndrome, or any other non-romanticized illness. I have never seen a transabled person whine about catheters, shots, pills, or literally anything else that affects people who are legitimately disabled. They have this view of disability existing on its own; they don’t see/think about the medical bills, inaccessibility, and condescension that is part of being disabled, and they can not say that they do because those are things they haven’t faced. The condescension and irritation leveled at the transableds is not the same thing as the anger and pity the disabled face every day. “People in wheelchairs are a drain on society” is a pretty common view. {Why “transabled” is bull}

She writes rather sardonically:

So, other than the perceived romanticism of certain disabilities (which I think of as Helen Keller Syndrome [sic]), why do people want to be disabled?

Part of it, I think, is Tumblr’s environment. Everything has a label on Tumblr. There are so many different types of romantic and sexual attraction I can’t keep up, and romanticism/sexuality isn’t alone. People label themselves with phobias, mental diagnoses, phobias, sexuality, sensuality, romanticism, gender, sex, pronouns, age, MBTI types, literally anything they can think of to make themselves seem interesting. It’s a constant strange contest

The overlabeling phenomena has led to what some call ‘special snowflaking’, whereby people feel the need to peacock every bit of their deviation from the norm in order to gain attention. It’s become almost a Strangeness Olympics, with points added for difference and docked for similarity. This is not being who you are, it’s announcing that YOU ARE SPECIAL! {Why “transabled” is bull}

How common are specific disabilitiesAll should know that disability is something to be avoided as much as possible, and when somebody is limited by what he or she can do with her body and/mind, there should be looked for ways to integrate in the contemporary working society.  Still we do have to consider a misfortune when people have something which the majority of the population would not consider a ‘normal’ thing. When a person is or has become disabled, it is something to be dealt with. It is not something to be coveted or pitied. Disability is part of who we are, but it is not something we chose to be. Who would choose to be depressed, or in constant pain, or in a body that refuses to obey commands, or who would love not being able to hear or to see? Though not feeling to be in the right body we would never consider to be a form of disability however it is also ‘not being able to be’ something or some one.

In that respect we should allow all people to be what they want to be and to give full respect in whatever they might choose to be and surely to consider a person who got something bad over him or her to see him or her as a full being, yet not able to do everything like lots of people would love it, still able to do lots of things and some even much better than those who we call able citizens.

How people look at those who are different is something which has to be learned from childhood. Therefore it is not bad that the industry takes this in account.

It is not bad more and more we can also find in toys puppets which have no arms or legs or who show some deformity in their body. In April 2015 after UK journalist Rebecca Atkinson noticed the lack of disability representation in toys she established #ToyLikeMe® and hoped crowdfunding would help to reach the necessary goals to be productive enough.


Rebecca had spent nearly 20 years working in TV production and print journalism (including Children’s BBC) and had always been interested in the way these industries represent disabled people, but this was the first time she had noticed the lack of representation in the toy industry. She called on some fellow mothers, and with their help, launched #ToyLikeMe on Facebook and Twitter to call on the global toy industry to start representing the 150 million disabled children worldwide. Read the full story in a Guardian newspaper article here.

 

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Please come to read

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Previous articles

Why I’m Angry

The Real ‘Choice’

Lessons I have learned

A quadruped amputee not stopped from wanting to achieve her dreams

I will not be defined

Though disabled in the eyes of society able to do great things

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Additional reading

  1. New articles for October 2011
  2. Living with some type of physical disability in the U.S.A.
  3. A boy named Lou

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Further related articles

  1. Political Correctness: Mission Impossible?
  2. The Sick, Our Everyday Heroes
  3. Delivering a Diagnosis
  4. Much in the capital city eludes the physically challenged
  5. Brands for a cause: Maltesers
  6. Mum adapts dolls to have disabilities so that ALL children can have toys that are ‘just like them’
  7. Our Most Notable and Favorite Disability Articles for the Week Ending January 6, 2017
  8. Don’t Forget…
  9. I’ve Moved
  10. Meet Houssaine: The Story of a Disabled Tourist Guide
  11. Its Own Kind of Joy
  12. The Things They Don’t Want To See.
  13. January 13, 2017-Lessons from a Disabled Cat
  14. Just Connie’s Year #12 : Dance Class!
  15. My Vision….not really knowing
  16. Letters To My Countrymen
  17. Melania Trump, Astrosplained

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Being and Feeling, Health affairs, Lifestyle, Political affairs, Social affairs, Welfare matters

Lessons I have learned

Panic-attack

Panic-attack (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The lady who had had her first ever proper panic attack a year ago, when she couldn’t breathe, and rapidly became hysterical in her bathroom away from her kids, knows how she can be challenged being a single mum to four kids, that being a pretty time consuming.

The challenges have been huge and diverse in the last year.

For this Cornish woman her husband is the unsung hero in her tale. He helps her get dressed and use the bathroom, wash, cooks, cleans, does most of the childcare, and pretty much has an elderly person for a wife in return for his efforts, a lot of the time.

Have you any idea what it’s like to have to get your husband to help you with toiletting? Or how awful it is to have to get your eight year old to put your socks on. To have to call your son to watch you get up the stairs in case you fall? Or to have to call your teenage daughter up to your room as you can’t open the curtains? Or to train your two year old to pass everything at floor level up to you, as you can’t bend down? How guilty you feel that you aren’t like the other mums, instead your children also help care for you? {Crossing the line.}

Let us look how she now fulfils all the needs and requirements when she as a seriously ill woman is doing the job of 2/3 people.

What can a person do when she is in severe pain everyday to varying degrees and when the  kidneys are not working properly, the immune system at about 40%, her pericarditis playing up (swollen third chamber of my heart) each day she spends half hour getting her back, knees, hips and knees moving before she can focus properly.

Like many chronic pain patients she has become highly skilled at hiding her pain over the last 24 years, and very few people will see or experience the vulnerable and broken person, that exists through the cracks.

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To remember:

it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks

We are all in charge of our own destiny and happiness, + must own our decisions, as they are ours alone to make. Whether that’s, medication, lifestyle, parenting, a job, relationships, moving across the country for a shot at happiness. Own it. 

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Preceding articles:

What would you do if…?

What would you do if…? Continued trial

What Are You Seeking?

Though disabled in the eyes of society able to do great things

I will not be defined

Fibromyalgia & ME/CFS Awareness Day

See the conquest and believe that we can gain the victory

The Goal

Cosmina Craciunescu looks on Positivism

A quadruped amputee not stopped from wanting to achieve her dreams

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You've gotta have Gumption....

I’ve been debating for a while where I’m going with this. The cold, hard truth of the matter is that I’ve had very little time for anything other than being mum, and trying to keep my body working as best it can. I can’t remember the last time I was able to read a paper, or watch a full film.

Turns out being a single mum to four kids is pretty time consuming, who knew!?

The challenges have been huge and diverse in the last year. How do I fulfill all their needs and requirements of me when I am one, seriously ill woman doing the job of 2/3 people? The logistics alone have been a nightmare, getting everyone where they need to be and collecting them, making sure they have all the kit they need for the various activities they do, homework, food, washing, teacher appointments, councilling, sports, friends…

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Health affairs, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs

A quadruped amputee not stopped from wanting to achieve her dreams

Shalini Saraswathi is a quadruped amputee, meaning she has lost both her arms and her legs. But then, that hasn’t stopped her from wanting to achieve her dreams.

In this months articles we want to show you how important it is to have the right attitude and that it is better to have a strong will, letting the mind govern the body. when you are willing to set your heart and mind to something, and let yourself not hold back by others, you have the honorary trophy in your hand.

Many times, we look at people who are physically disabled with pity and feel bad for them, thinking their entire life is a waste. But many of these disabled people have the will and the strength to move mountains. They do not let their disability stand in the way of achieving their dreams. Some with the help of technology and others with sheer grit and determination, they walk towards their dreams and show the world that they too are just are important and no, their physical disability is not a barrier. One such brave lady is 37 year old Shalini Saraswathi from Bengaluru.

Shalini now plans to participate and run in the TCS World 10K in Bangalore, a 10km run marathon which is open for participants over the age of 15.

While Shalini admits that the initial days were tough and she just wanted the whole ordeal to be over, she is now excited about it and wants to test herself and see how far she can go. She also hopes to inspire people through her run and also try and get sponsors for her future dream as the prosthetics and equipments are expensive.

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She might have lost both her arms and legs but that’s not stopping Shalini from participating in a marathon contest!

Shalini Saraswathi

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Preceding articles:

What would you do if…?

What would you do if…? Continued trial

What Are You Seeking?

Though disabled in the eyes of society able to do great things

I will not be defined

Fibromyalgia & ME/CFS Awareness Day

See the conquest and believe that we can gain the victory

The Goal

Cosmina Craciunescu looks on Positivism

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Further reading

  1. Runners raise Rs 4 crore for charity
  2. His ‘disability’ helps him excel in mathematics
  3. Prince Harry and the Invictus Games
  4. Boswell-the-Boma in Ten Tors Challenge
  5. Olympic paraclimbing
  6. Your Disability Should Be Your Ability – The Tale Of Blessing Henebeng
  7. I’ve Been Couch-bound For Two Days Now
  8. Casting for new legs…
  9. Update 5.10.2016
  10. “Looking for a Straight Spine”
  11. Chronic Life: Getting a New Diagnosis
  12. Digital vs Print Media
  13. Raggy Dolly
  14. Rising Fire
  15. Life Lessons from Lyme
  16. Shared spaces
  17. what the body knows…what unfolds
  18. Advice for Mothers

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Filed under Health affairs, Lifestyle

I will not be defined

12916750_592162430939533_6271579390176391120_o_edited14 year old Faith Martin who lives on the south coast of England calls herself very lucky, though she has the neurological disorder Cerebral Palsy, characterized by paralysis resulting from abnormal development of or damage to the brain either before birth or during the first years of life. Having managed to achieve lots of different things meaning that she has been able to improve her own and others lives, according to her own saying.

She had started an online petition and campaign for disability awareness to be taught in schools across the UK which then led to him becoming a student rep in her school to help improve other disabled people have a better school life and make a difference.

She would like to become a disabled activist and make “Our Life with Cerebral Palsy” a recognizable organization to help disabled people. All this whilst she discovered that its time to change a few little unhealthy habits into positive happier ones.

She does not want people to feel sorry for her because that is the worst thing they could do.
She too is confronted wit many people who shy away from the subject which means that for the younger generation now its going to be even harder to reduce the stigma of disability.

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Preceding articles:

What would you do if…?

What Are You Seeking?

Though disabled in the eyes of society able to do great things

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3 Comments

Filed under Being and Feeling, Health affairs, Lifestyle, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs

Though disabled in the eyes of society able to do great things

How common are specific disabilitiesHow many people do not take it for granted that we can make our bodies move about the world as we command them to. But lots of people have no such blessing. There are even people who remain conscious but are unable to move, communicate, or even breathe on their own. For them their body may be like a prison in which they are closed up and have no prospect to become liberated. Can you imagine how it must feel , knowing you never get out of that prison, which limits you to one particular place where no easy communication is possible?

People can be periodically blocked or not able to move any more. Others can have periodic paralyses as a genetic disorder characterized by episodes of sudden muscular paralysis. Again others may have got the bad news they shall become more and more limited in what they can do to end up to be fully limited in their actions and having to face death, totally paralysed. For them it is not just for minutes or hours that muscles become flaccid and useless. For several people there are no such episodes which are reversible with treatment of abnormal potassium levels, and in most cases aren’t fatal.

What would you do if you come to know your body is deteriorating?

English: 1934 Goudey baseball card of Lou Gehr...

English: 1934 Goudey baseball card of Lou Gehrig of the New York Yankees #61. PD-not-renewed. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What if you are a lover of movement, a dancer or a baseball player like Ludwig Heinrich Gehrig, better known under Lou Gehrig and his byname the Iron Horse or Iron Man (born June 19, 1903, New York, New York, U.S.—died June 2, 1941, New York City). He was one of the most durable players in American professional baseball and one of its great hitters, but had to hear terrible news after a year of speedy decline, falling several times, not having strong wings any more, in 1939, getting diagnosed with a rare nervous system disorder, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); this disease has come to be known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

A sportswriter observed that Gehrig looked “like a man trying to lift heavy trunks into a truck.”

When the Yankees arrived in Detroit for a May 2 game, Gehrig was hitting .143. He took himself out of the lineup, telling McCarthy it was “for the good of the team.” Gehrig took the lineup card to home plate with Babe Dahlgren‘s name at first base. The Detroit fans applauded for two minutes. Gehrig tipped his cap and disappeared into the dugout and the record books. He would never play another game. His streak of 2,130 games was a record that would stand for 56 years. He finished with 493 home runs, 535 doubles, 162 triples, a .340 batting average and 1,990 RBIs, third-highest among all major leaguers. {Encyclopedia of World Biography | 2004: Lou Gehrig}

On May 2, he took himself out of the Yankees’ lineup, and he never played baseball again. He left baseball with a career batting average of .340, with 493 home runs and 1,990 runs batted in, all during regular season play. In seven World Series (34 games), he batted .361, hit 10 home runs, and drove in 35 runs. {Encyclopedia  Britannica – biography:Lou-Gehrig} He was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1939.

What if you start feeling those early symptoms which may only involve mild weakness, slurred speech, or twitching?

However those patients who are slowly locked inside their bodies, losing their ability to control any movement should not loose hope for what they can achieve. Even when in the inevitable conclusion, the unlucky victims getting unable to even speak or swallow there are ways out to be able to communicate. Though they might come completely dependent upon others for total care, some of the victims have proven to be stronger than their disease and mad sure they could mean something special in our society.

When sensation and the mind are left intact, leaving the patient helplessly aware of their imprisonment it is a matter of daring to not allow the adversary pull you down. Do not allow yourself being pulled down neither by those around you, who may loose patience with ‘a case like you’, but use that still active brain to show the world you are able to think properly.

English: Professor Stephen Hawking in Cambridg...

Professor Stephen Hawking in Cambridge, UK. Español: El profesor Stephen Hawking en Cambridge, Reino Unido. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, who has surpassed typical survival expectations by decades, is one of the most beautiful examples how a person can be stronger than his captor or retainer. At his last visit in Belgium, last Autumn, he gave a marvellous interview on the Flemish television, where he was followed for his whole stay in that small country where they look up at that grate man.

After having been an outstanding student at St. Alban’s School he received a first-class honors degree in physics at University College, Oxford (B.A., 1962), Hawking set off for Cambridge University to begin studying at Trinity Hall, (Ph.D., 1966) and looking at the themes of cosmology which would preoccupy him throughout his life.

Stephen William Hawking was elected a research fellow at Gonville and Caius College at Cambridge. Though it was already in the early 1960s that Hawking contracted amyotrophic lateral sclerosis but that did not stop him to continue with what he liked best. He continued to work despite the disease’s progressively disabling effects and became considered the most insightful theoretical physicist since Albert Einstein. with good reason he gained a worldwide following, not only among other scientists, but also among a great many laypeople and as an author and lecturer, he has achieved celebrity status.

Black & White photo of Hawking at NASA.

Stephen William Hawking, CH, CBE, FRS, FRSA , English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, author and Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology within the University of Cambridge. – Here seen at NASA in the 1980s.

For religious people his explanation of the Big Bang theory may be very revealing. Hawking is not afraid to question such idea if there had been a beginning to space-time (a big bang), or whether one state of affairs (one universe, to put it loosely) simply gave birth to another without beginning or end. He also dare to tell that there is so much we do not know yet and that we may not underestimate the force of nature, that new universes might be born frequently through little-understood anomalies in space-time. He also investigated string theory and exploding black holes, and showed mathematically that numerous miniature black holes may have formed early in the history of our universe. When humans develop the unified field theory, said Hawking, they will “know the mind of God.”

His goal to come to a complete understanding of the universe,

“why it is as it is and why it exists at all.”

is something he nor we shall be able to reach, but for sure he has proven that we do not allow a disease to imprison or chain us and to have it to make us useless. He is the living proof, that though disabled, a human being can be able to do much.

 

Be it ALS, MS, AS, Transverse myelitis, High-Level Quadriplegia, Akinetic Mutism, Fibromyalgia, Locked-In Syndrome or any other nightmare diseases, let it not destroy your mind, your way of thinking your way of being yourself a “I Am” wroth being.

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Please do find also a list of some famous and well known people with various disabilities and conditions: Famous People with Disability

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Disability Videos
Selection of video clips providing information for and about persons with disabilities in video format.

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Preceding articles:

What would you do if…?

What would you do if…? Continued trial

See the conquest and believe that we can gain the victory

The Goal

Cosmina Craciunescu looks on Positivism

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Further reading:

  1. Civil Rights Worldwide – Disability
  2. Silence as Acquiescence: On the Need to Address Disability Stereotyping in Kocherov and Sergeyeva v. Russia
  3. What does body identity mean today?
  4. Life in chronic pain
  5. Access for All: Agenda for Americans with Disabilities – 3 New Bills
  6. Disability: Benefits, Facts & Resources for Persons with Disabilities
  7. It’s All Relative
  8. We can do Anything, but hear!
  9. “The Danger of Silence” by Clint Smith
  10. I will not be defined
  11. Schrodinger’s Chiari
  12. Your daughter has ABS…
  13. My Fibromyalgia Awareness Day
  14. Fibromyalgia & ME/CFS Awareness Day
  15. The Burden of ME/CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome)
  16. Ableism & Hate Crime – Disability
  17. Suffering with M.E..
  18. Bhil family struggles with three disabled members
  19. DWP: Disabled Woman, Persecuted.
  20. The Daily Fix: The Jeeja Ghosh judgement is an important moment in the fight for disability rights
  21. Entertainment – Disability
  22. When Snapchat Filters Mock Your Medical Condition
  23. It’s wicked to mock the afflicted – Kenneth Howerd…
  24. Leader of the PACK
  25. To J.K. Rowling from Us
  26. The Book That Changed My Life The Most
  27. Assistive Technology – Disability
  28. Update and NoobGrind GTX 1080 article
  29. The Scars From Which I Have Grown
  30. Disability in the Church
  31. Pastor Lingerfelt, Do We Look “Retarded” To You?
  32. Want to Be an Awesome Ally for People with Disabilities?
  33. Over-Explaining
  34. Sunshine or Rain
  35. When Strength Isn’t Enough
  36. A Circus Stole Some of My Monkeys!
  37. Intrview: My Story – Living with Aspergers Syndrome
  38. “I just wanted to die” – living with leprosy in Myanmar.
  39. What is on your bucket list?
  40. She might have lost both her arms and legs but that’s not stopping Shalini from participating in a marathon contest!
  41. Lessons I have learned
  42. The cost of living (with a disability)
  43. Bringing Disability Accessibility to Colchester: How YOU Can Help
  44. Euphemistic Terminology
  45. Time Passes…Life Goes On…Even Under Seeming Odds
  46. Bad to worse to… hopeful?
  47. Not much to say
  48. Life is Short, True Love is Rare….

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